Posted at March 21, 2013 | Categories : Community,Fundraiser | 0 Comment

One Foot Forward: Marathoning in Honor of Two Special Christoff Guys

The Christoff and Frey families have been involved with the Fragile X community since Mitchell Christoff was diagnosed with fragile X syndrome at age 3 back in 2002. Mitchell turns 14 in April, he enjoys cheering for Indiana University basketball, among any other pursuits!

Mitchell’s uncle David Frey has honored Mitchell over the years by orchestrating several fundraising projects for Fragile X. He ran the Richmond, VA Marathon in 2002, and two half-marathons in Virginia Beach, VA in 2007. Thanks to the generosity of family, friends, and work colleagues, these three fundraising endeavors delivered over $37,000 to support research and services for people affected by Fragile X.

Mitchell’s grandfather Joe Christoff Sr. was a tremendous supporter of the National Fragile X Foundation. Joe Sr. passed away suddenly in the summer of 2012. David chose to honor Joe Sr.’s legacy and Mitchell by running the Battleship Memorial Half-Marathon in Wilmington, NC on November 4, 2012 and the Napa Valley Marathon on March 3, 2013. He challenged his friends, family, and business colleagues to support the NFXF during his training and events.

Mitchell’s father, Joey Christoff, and David developed a plan to match many of the contributions made to the foundation. Foundation team member Shea Matthews worked with David to track the donors and the assist with providing follow-up correspondence to them.

David began his training in September 2012, logging over 500 miles in five different states: North Carolina, South Carolina, Indiana, Illinois, and California. The half-marathon in Wilmington presented a “test” due to the unusually warm weather for November. He completed the race in 2 hours, 9 minutes.

Thankfully, California’s Wine Country provided a beautiful, cool environment with a flat course for David to tackle the Napa Valley Marathon earlier this month. He crossed the finish line in 4 hours, 25 minutes, and spent the following day with his wife Gail “recovering” amongst some of the wineries in the region.

Checks honoring Joe Sr. and Mitchell began arriving in late August 2012, during the early phases of David’s race training, and have continued to arrive ever since. Contributions have come from generous donors in 17 different states across the country, and a number of these folks have taken advantage of their employer’s matching gift programs. The grand total received to date is over $11,000!

David and his family are extremely appreciative of all the support their extended family and friends have provided to the foundation, and the foundation salutes the Christoff and Frey families in turn for their longtime commitment to all things Fragile X!